A couple of days ago, I was grocery shopping. The cashier cried.
No, she really cried. It was rather awkward.
Now, this is the grocery store I typically go to. I'm not on a first name basis with this cashier or anything, but I've certainly seen her there before, and I think it's safe to say she could pick me out of a line-up quite readily. She's good - efficient, competent, seems to be well-liked by co-workers. She also has a bit of a tough look about her. She's no butch, but suffice to say that if we were in a bar fight, I'd rather she was on my side than the other.
But, I also sense that she's not the type to hide her emotions which makes the crying thing not all that strange, but still a little strange. I was just there at the ready with my credit card as she was scanning my purchases. A manager walked by and simply asked the Tough Cashier how much longer her shift was, to which TC replied, "that remains to be seen" with a bit of flair to the nostrils.
This seemed to take the manager a bit aback, but Miss Manager seemed to sense that this was a now-is-not-a-good-time moment. She simply paused and said, "okay", and walked away, leaving me there with the now watery-eyed Tough Cashier.
The watery-eyes became full-puddled-eyes accompanied by flush-face and a bit of sniffle-nose. She would briefly compose herself, then the puddles would return. Never all out bawling, but enough to show that it wasn't allergies. A friend recently remarked to me how uncomfortable she is when someone cries in front of her. I thought, it's not such a bad thing, but this was pretty uncomfortable.
What would you do? I didn't know what to do. Say something in condolence? I had no idea what she was upset about. She just continued about my groceries: "Want your milk in a bag *sniffle*?", etc... I thought to ask if she was okay, but then that seemed like a stupid question.
When it was over, I just smiled, gently took my receipt, and genuinely thanked her for doing her job. Later that afternoon, a cloudburst broke out just in time for my crossing guard duty.
I guess it was just a water theme day.